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04-14-2012, 04:51 AM   #856
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What I've said doesn't describe - fortunately - all Pentaxians, by far; and is not limited to Pentaxians
Wow, you're upset because Ned Bunnell dared to not deliver a message in time, on his personal blog? I can't even imagine what you'll do, if Pentax would ever delay an actual product... wait, they did. So, what was your response?

04-14-2012, 04:53 AM   #857
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
I'm sorry, but what makes you think people will be happy because Ricoh has a (good) plan and it will execute it quite well (hopefully)?
No, I'm sorry. I forgot the sarcasm tag. My opening is instructive.

I do believe Ricoh has a plan. I'm not sure Pentax USA has one yet, though.
04-14-2012, 05:08 AM   #858
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Probably you're right; but we're only at the beginning of the road.
04-14-2012, 05:24 AM   #859
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
Probably you're right; but we're only at the beginning of the road.
Oh absolutely. I've been trying to say that since late January but the hurricane of negative responses to anything Pentax Ricoh does is impossible to shout through. My "Be of good cheer" tag was fun for about a week. I tried be patient. I bought a K-01 (great camera by the way, if a little different). I've posted what I believe the release roadmap is for the next year (including a measureable possibility of a FF), K5 through December, K5n, K3, K-02, Q lenses, XS lenses, DA Ltd. lenses, 50/1.8, 645 lenses.

The tsunami couldn't have come at a worse time for Pentax - they have a robust plan and product pipeline, but it was all pushed back 2 or 3 quarters.

Once bought, Ricoh first HAD to gain control of Pentax USA, where retailers were actually competing with Pentax Europe and with the Australian distributor. Pentax USA is absolutely a mess. I'm not so sure we'll even have a Pentax USA in 12 months - possibly a competent distributor, but better to start over.

Ricoh also has to gain control of their manufacturing space and schedule. Given the planned product launches - they seem to be taking down all their production lines at the same time to reorganize their production strategy and (hopefully) improve QC - it makes some sense to slow sales by raising prices. Two birds with one stone.

I don't know anything from the inside - i've spent my entire life observing businesses from the outside. There are accepted business behaviors evident in high-quality, growing companies that are fundamentally absent in Pentax USA, The Bunnell blog affair is just indicative of how out-of-control and un-businesslike P-USA is when compared to the other divisions. Everyone seems to like Ned and respect him as a photographer, but that doesn't mean he has the professional skills to compete with the CEO of Nikon USA or Canon USA. I think P-USA is such a mess it will take years to rebuild - if it even can be done - and Ricoh probably needs to establish cash flow elsewhere to plow into the market here.

Ricoh seems to be performing a cold reboot of the entire company.

Sometimes I don't know whether to be optimistic because we now have a competent, interested owner or sad that this once-great optics company has made so many crushing misjudgements over the last 20 years.


Last edited by monochrome; 04-14-2012 at 05:33 AM.
04-14-2012, 05:51 AM   #860
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
What I've said doesn't describe - fortunately - all Pentaxians, by far; and is not limited to Pentaxians
Wow, you're upset because Ned Bunnell dared to not deliver a message in time, on his personal blog? I can't even imagine what you'll do, if Pentax would ever delay an actual product... wait, they did. So, what was your response?
As has been said, he didn't need to make any comment at all- no one forced him to do so. Next, he didn't need to promise anything- no one forced him to do so. However, he did do both- of his own free will. He needs to keep his word or it does harm both his reputation and that of PRIC.

Try this quote, you seem to like them: Never judge a person until you've walked a mile in their shoes.

Try living with Pentax USA before you try to tell us how to behave!
04-14-2012, 06:17 AM   #861
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
Wow, you're upset because Ned Bunnell dared to not deliver a message in time, on his personal blog?
I'm not upset. I just have the position that as the president of Pentax USA you either maintain a blog professionally, or you don't have one at all. Anything in the middle does not compute for me.

QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
I can't even imagine what you'll do, if Pentax would ever delay an actual product... wait, they did.
No idea what product you are talking about.
04-14-2012, 06:19 AM   #862
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As un-CEO-like as it is, I appreciate when someone like Ned decides to talk with us instead of living in its CEO cloud.
And if a response will be given few days later ("can he do it that fast?" - was going through my mind when I read his message), what's the big harm? We all know you won't be satisfied with whatever he will (be allowed to) say.
I understand the built-up frustration and I can't blame you for that; but quite often, it's IMO misguided; like now, when you're punishing good intentions.

ClassA: the 60-250 is a very good example. Or the 645D. Or the 1.4x TC for which we are still waiting.
04-14-2012, 06:58 AM   #863
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
As un-CEO-like as it is, I appreciate when someone like Ned decides to talk with us instead of living in its CEO cloud.
And if a response will be given few days later ("can he do it that fast?" - was going through my mind when I read his message), what's the big harm? We all know you won't be satisfied with whatever he will (be allowed to) say.
I understand the built-up frustration and I can't blame you for that; but quite often, it's IMO misguided; like now, when you're punishing good intentions.

ClassA: the 60-250 is a very good example. Or the 645D. Or the 1.4x TC for which we are still waiting.
By "we" I hope you don't presume to speak for anyone other than yourself. If by "you" you refer to monochrome I hope you have read the politely critical posts I've made since January. "Good intentions" are a nice concept. They're fine to present when you are in control of your business. They count for nothing when you are restructuring in order to survive and grow - what you need under the current circumstances is results, not intentions. Show me Pentax USA's results and we can discuss further. If Ned posts a clearly defined plan of action with hard commitments to Pentax (I will be surprised) then I will congratulate his response - but he shouldn't be doing that on a blog. That kind of coimmunication should be made in an interview with a leading publication, negotiated and controlled by public relations managers and other professionals. Pentax USA doesn't have those - they have an image contractor.

I have nothing against Ned Bunnell or John Carlson personally. I don't know them.

I've made it perfectly clear how I believe a corporation should be run and how the President and National Director of Sales should behave publicly.
  • I believe the BigBox strategy was destined or a bad outcome and it seems I was correct
  • I believe outsourcing virtually all business functions of Pentax USA to contractors left P-USA slow to react to change and not directly in control of quality, and I was correct.
  • I believe a structure where the President calls on customers allocates his time away from management functions the Executive Officer should be performing - and I have been proven correct.
  • I believe the President of a company should absolutely NOT communicate on a personal blog with consumers of company product. It opens the entire company to misunderstandings and unnecessary perception risks, such as we are experiencing right now.
I know others disagree with me. In my view Pentax USA has through these actions put the entire enterprise at risk ceding control of PRI's own business strategy to large retailers and self-interested contractors, and disaffecting consumers in what is still the largest consumer market on Earth.

But that doesn't mean I think Pentax will fail nor does it mean I think Ned is a bad guy.

04-14-2012, 07:45 AM   #864
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monochrome, no, I wasn't talking about you; however, I see there is a strong anti-Ned Bunnell&John Carlson movement around here (and again, I'm not including you into it).
Yes, I know - you disagree with Ned having a personal blog&such. As I've said, I actually appreciate it; however, I cannot say you are wrong; you could be absolutely right - and we're seeing this backfiring, right now; but I still appreciate it

Do we know why they did what they did? Maybe it was forced by Hoya, as a part of the downsizing and cost cutting. The track record is not so good, but the real trial starts now, IMO.

US is, I believe, #2 on the digital camera market (which, of course, means it should not be ignored).

Maybe using "we" was a mistake; I'm doing that when I firmly believe my opinion is far from being singular. My apologies if anyone was offended.
04-14-2012, 08:03 AM   #865
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So just for clarification: In what markets Are Pentax doing a good job?
04-14-2012, 08:05 AM   #866
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
monochrome, no, I wasn't talking about you; however, I see there is a strong anti-Ned Bunnell&John Carlson movement around here (and again, I'm not including you into it).
Yes, I know - you disagree with Ned having a personal blog&such. As I've said, I actually appreciate it; however, I cannot say you are wrong; you could be absolutely right - and we're seeing this backfiring, right now; but I still appreciate it

Do we know why they did what they did? Maybe it was forced by Hoya, as a part of the downsizing and cost cutting. The track record is not so good, but the real trial starts now, IMO.

US is, I believe, #2 on the digital camera market (which, of course, means it should not be ignored).

Maybe using "we" was a mistake; I'm doing that when I firmly believe my opinion is far from being singular. My apologies if anyone was offended.
We agree iin our optimism, that it is the beginning of the journey rather than the end, that the future is bright and that patience is necessary. Some here seem to imagine Ricoh can wave a wand and more than a decade of bad luck and bad decisions can be corrected in 6 months. I like information. I just think it should be released in a controlled way.

Pentax USA unfortunately doesn't have the corporate infrastructure to do that. Damned if they do and damned if they don't. Under those conditions, choose don't. At least you can't make it worse.
04-14-2012, 08:16 AM   #867
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QuoteOriginally posted by Silverstierna Quote
So just for clarification: In what markets Are Pentax doing a good job?
I couldn't say with certainty, but Europe appears to have infrastructure and Canada seems to be turning themselves around. I have no contact with Asia. Australia is a distributor.

One indicator is how the K-01 was introduced. Canada and EU had info and pictures on the front page of their websites on the day of the CP+ press release. Pentax USA didn't have a front-page photo or a direct link to the store until a month after the product was actually shipping. In order to find anything you had to know to look under Products >> Hybrid cameras >> page 2, after the Q. It looked as if Pentax-USA was embarrassed to even show the camera. Given that they don't manage their website with direct employees, they had to have changes made by thier contractor. Pentax Likely wouldn't release info to a contractor in advance, so a page update couldn't be prepared in advance. See the problem?
04-14-2012, 08:18 AM   #868
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
US is, I believe, #2 on the digital camera market

It depends upon what you mean by digital camera market. Outside of p&s cameras america is barely the number three market for all cameras that are not p&s. Both (western) Europe and Asia far outsell all of North america
04-14-2012, 08:28 AM   #869
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
I couldn't say with certainty, but Europe appears to have infrastructure and Canada seems to be turning themselves around. I have no contact with Asia. Australia is a distributor.
I don't really see Pentax Canada doing a good job, they might do a better job then US, but just ever so slightly.

Europe might be better, although I have lived in both Sweden and the UK and they didn't do much in either countries.
( people living there now might have a diffrent view as this was a few years ago now )

QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
See the problem?
Yeah.... but what worries me is that if you are a large company (Hoya, Ricoh or Pentax) you make sure you have those things in place before a world release, unless as a company you dont beleive in the product yourself, which is even worse...
04-14-2012, 08:30 AM   #870
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I am doing my part to help out though as I just bought the 77mm Ltd..... Someone has to pay for that website getting updated
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